Nouri Al Maliki wants Vilayat-e Faqih for #Iraq?

Former Iraq PM Nouri Al Maliki

Iraq’s’ president Haider al-Abbadi is in Iran, again. This is his second visit in 10 months.

According to my colleague Imran Khan, he is in Tehran to:

seek reassurances from the Iranians that they will allow him to be in complete control of the armed forces.

By armed forces he is referring to the Shia militia umbrella group called Hashd Al Shaabi, or the Popular Mobilisation Forces (PMF). It claims to have 100,000 fighters.

The PMF consists of Shia militia such as the Badr Brigade, Asaib Ahl Haq and others. It also includes a small number of Sunni tribal fighters. Their goal is to fight and destroy ISIS.

It is believed that until now Iran has exercised great control over the military command and activities of this group. It seems now that Iraq’s PM wants to e in charge, and not Iran.

What I find particular interesting in Imran’s latest article was the remark made by Mohammed Jasim al-Dadhim, who is a professor at the Islamic jurisprudence college at Baghdad University.

Professor Al Dadhim states that Iraq’s former president Nouri Al Maliki is trying to implement the Vilayat-e Faqih (Guardianship of the Jurist) system, which is currently ruling Iran. One of the most notable features of such a system is a supreme leader who has more political power than anyone else.

While its true that Al Maliki is close to the leadership in Iran, I think such an observation deserves to be questioned.

If Vilayat-e Faqih is implemented in Iraq, it would mean that if Maliki does return to power again as Prime Minister (something which many believe he wants to do) under the Vilayat-e Faqih system, he would be subordinate to the position of the supreme leader. However under the current system, he would hold the highest political office in his country.

Why would Al Maliki want to reduce his own potential influence? Why would any politician?